The Crooked Falls Hike in Squamish is an awesome trail that takes you through old growth forests, has insane aerial views of the glacial blue Squamish River and an epic waterfall at the end of it all. This hike is just a 30-minute drive from Squamish town and is less busy than some of the main hikes in the area such as The Chief.
It’s a bit of a grind as the majority of the trail is a steep climb up, but it’s not too long and the different scenery you get to enjoy easily makes it worth it.
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Crooked Falls Trail Overview
How to Get to Crooked Falls
The trailhead for this hike is a 30-minute drive from Squamish and a 1 hour 35-minute drive from downtown Vancouver. Drive past Squamish on the Sea to Sky Highway and turn left onto the Squamish Valley Road which is opposite Alice Lake Provincial Park.
Take this road for 24 kilometres before you reach the turn off for Ashlu Road, which starts with a wooden bridge that takes you over the Squamish River. After about 2 kilometres on this road you will reach Sigurd Creek. This is where the entrance to the Sigurd Creek trailhead is, which will take you to the falls.
The last 3 kilometres of this drive are along unpaved roads with lots of pot holes. It can be done in any car but you will need to drive slowly along this last stretch. There are a few car parking spots off the main road but if you visit on the weekend these will likely be taken up by campers and the majority of people just park at the road side.
Sigurd Creek Trail
Camping is allowed in the area near the trailhead by Sigurd Creek and also along the Squamish River before you turn off onto Ashlu Road. It tends to be very busy with campers on the weekends, so don’t be surprised to turn up and see lots of tents and plenty of cars parked up here.
The trailhead is just across the last wooden bridge where the majority of people camp. It isn’t signposted but it is an obvious rocky opening on the left hand side of the road. The first couple of hundred metres are a steep climb up this rocky trail. The initial part of this trail is along a relatively wide path through the trees. After the initial climb the trail turns left, levels out and ascends gradually for the next several hundred metres.
Along the flatter section of the trail there is a fork in the trail with a large wooden notice board. The trail splits off to the right but you will want to go straight ahead to reach the falls. Along the next section of this trail you reach a couple of incredible viewpoints which open up through the trees. The views down to the Squamish River and the surrounding mountains are spectacular.
You will also pass a cool cliff face with water running down it on your right hand side. The path begins to narrow and become more rugged here with plenty of rocks and tree roots to watch out for. After the second lookout, the trail turns back into the dense forest and along an earthy path. This is where the trail really starts to become steep and it is pretty much a straight climb to the falls from this point.
The first section of dense forest that you pass through is beautiful. You will be completely sheltered from the sun here and everything you see is covered in moss. There are also some huge boulders that the trail winds by as well, which are really cool and remind us of the beginning of the Shlanay Trail in Squamish. The trail through the forest is easy to follow with orange markers on the trees at regular intervals and the trail is well trodden enough to follow.
5 minutes before reaching the waterfall there is another fork in the trail which is marked with a small sign. You will want to follow the sign and go left to reach the falls. The roar of the crashing water lets you know that you are coming close to the falls, but it doesn’t reveal itself until you are right there as the forest is so dense. The climb to the waterfall from the entrance to the trailhead took us 1 hour and 10 minutes.
There are two different viewpoints which you can enjoy the awesome views of the waterfall from. The best view comes from the trail on the left which takes you down in front of the falls. There are two natural viewing platforms right at the base of the falls which are exhilarating to stand on. The falls are so powerful that you get blasted by the spray which is a welcome refreshment after the steep climb.
The secondary trail on the right is a little bit sketchier to climb down but it is worth it to get an alternate view of the falls. This viewpoint is in amongst the trees and lets you watch the water crash over the rocks from the side. We definitely recommend going to both viewpoints once you get here.
After enjoying a well-deserved rest and a quick snack, you can make your way back down the trail.
Stoltmann Lookout Viewpoint
On the way back down we recommend heading to the Stoltmann lookout. The turn off for this is at the junction a couple of hundred metres from the falls. Unfortunately, it is another short and steep climb to reach the viewpoint but the extra effort is totally worth it and it is only an extra 5 minutes.
Take the trail heading upwards at the junction along the Sigurd Trail and after a couple of minutes you will come to a junction with a small sign on a wooden post. The Sigurd Trail continues to the left but you will want to go right to reach the lookout.
After another couple of minutes, you will reach the top of a large boulder with incredible views of the surrounding scenery. You will get uninterrupted views of the Squamish River and the snow-capped mountains directly across from the valley. The views are awesome and this spot tends to be quiet as many hikers don’t want to add the extra elevation gain to the end of their hike.
Once you have admired the views, you can make your way all the way back to the bottom of the trail following the same route that you came up on. We began at around 10am and the trail was relatively quiet, but as we hiked back down to our car it was way busier. Similar to all hikes in the area, the earlier you can begin the better.
This out and back again hike should be completed in around 3 hours. Once you have finished up head back to Squamish to grab a well-earned beer!
Check out these great places to stay in Squamish
While we are always big fans of camping when visiting Squamish there are also plenty of cool places to stay for all budgets.
Budget: Squamish Adventure Inn Hostel – A great option for anyone on a tight budget. This hostel is a great place to meet fellow explorers and has an awesome outdoor garden and patio to enjoy the epic sunsets. A daily shuttle services nearby attractions in the summer and Whistler in the winter.
Mid-range: Howe Sound Inn & Brewing Company – Is there any better place to stay than at a craft brewery? The Inn is in a fantastic location and has awesome rustic rooms. You can also hang out in the sauna or grab a massage after a full day hiking.
Luxury: Executive Suites Hotel and Resort – This hotel has an indoor and an outdoor pool, a gym, and best of all, a hot tub. There are few better places to relax in after spending your day in the mountains.
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The Crooked Falls Trail is a great option for anyone looking to hike in the Squamish area. It is a decent length, a solid workout for your legs and has a great payoff with the waterfall and viewpoints at the end of the trail. We would highly recommend checking it out next time you are in the area!
Been on this hike recently? Let us know your thoughts on it in the comments!
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